The military history of the United States during the Korean War began after the defeat of Japan by the Allied Powers in World War II. This brought an end to 35 years of Japanese occupation of the Korean Peninsula and led to the peninsula being divided into two zones; a northern zone occupied by the Soviet Union and a southern zone occupied by the United States. After negotiations on reunification failed, the latter became the Republic of Korea or South Korea in August 1948 while the former became the Democratic People’s Republic of North Korea or North Korea in September 1948.
Dedication of Phase I of the Korean War Memorial took place on July 27, 2013 in remembrance of the 60th anniversary of the Korean War Armistice. County officials provided funds to construct the memorial that features a granite edifice with a map of Korea and the names of 56 Hillsborough County military personnel who perished there during the war. One of the local Medal of Honor Veterans, Lt Baldomero Lopez’s granite plaque with the Incheon seawall rock was moved from Ed Radice Park to the new memorial and properly installed and walls were constructed where individual memorial plaques could be placed to honor individuals and organizations.
January 23rd, 2016, marked rededication of the Korean War memorial through the unveiling of three statues that were not available for the 2013 event. The three statues are: (1) a Korean woman with children who is contemplating those who made the supreme sacrifice, (2) The American Combat Soldier emblematic of Lt. Lopez, and (3) General Douglas MacArthur whose genius in devising the US invasion at Incheon turned the tide of the war.